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  1. #1
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    Clydes on tubulars

    Any of you riding tubulars? I recently built a nice set of cheap, light, and strong clinchers ( they said you can only have 2 of the three I proved them wrong) using velocity fusion rims, circus monkey hubs and dt super comp and revolution spokes. wheelset came in at 1583 grams and they truly ride great. So now it's gotten me want to experiment. I see carbon tubular rims from china for a nice price. Lets skip the fact that they may or may not be legit, I've seen enough evidence from various forums to believe they are legitimately manufactured. I just don't know what to expect at my weight (about 240 lbs). I'm smart enough to know that I should go with 32 spokes and many of the sellers don't offer that as a std drilling but will do it for you for a small upcharge. I see all sorts of different depths and the rim weights are just so low on them it's almost a bit scary. 25mm tubulars weighing below 300grams for the rim! My guess is that at my weight, if I'm going to consider this, I need to go with a deeper profile like a 50mm rim which will have a lot more material. What I envision is a wheelset that the wheels without tires glued on could come in about 100grams less than what I have now and be far more aero. When you factor in that there are tubulars that weigh 200grams, thats like riding on a race clincher without having to put a 100 gram tube in.

    Am I way off base and dreaming here? I can get a pair of rims for about $225, circus monkey hubs for $100 then figure about another $100 for spokes. Add another $200 for tires and I've got a pimped out wheelset for $625. Am I crazy?

  2. #2
    SuperGimp TrojanHorse's Avatar
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    I think you will find that carbon aero rims will be pretty flexy & overall the experience will be a big PITA & much more expensive than clinchers.

    Don't let that stop you though, I'm just thinking out loud here.

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    Senior Member Seve's Avatar
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    You will need a couple of new sets of brake pads as well, given the carbon braking surface.

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    Senior Member socalrider's Avatar
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    The rims are fine but many tubular tires are very supple which means lots of give for a rider 240+.. If you go that route I would look at a tire like the Continental Sprinter - a little harder compound tire - also rated up to 170psi with a burst pressure of 400+.. I would also consider the Vittoria Pave Tubular which is a hair wider at 700x24 and is what most riders use at paris Roubaix..

    http://www.biketiresdirect.com/produ...0-tpi?ss=21758

    http://www.biketiresdirect.com/produ...r-tubular-tire

    I use to race on sprinter and they were great tires..

  5. #5
    Senior Member mkadam68's Avatar
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    I also went this route. 88mm rims, 24(r)/20(f) 14g spokes. Don't worry about 32 spokes--overkill. Taller rims need fewer spokes. I plan on getting some 40/50mm rims next and will go 28/24 spokes. Details here. I figured, "Why get $2,000 Zipps if they're gonna go out of true on me?" So, for $700 a set (including very nice Vittoria Corsa EVO tires), I have a nice set of aero wheels. I love the tubular tires. Their sidewalls don't squish out on me as much as clinchers do. I also ride them about 125psi no problems.

    Only problems I have found: winds push me around on the 88mm rims, and the learning curve on gluing tubulars has been a little too steep & slow for my liking.

    Quote Originally Posted by TrojanHorse View Post
    I think you will find that carbon aero rims will be pretty flexy & overall the experience will be a big PITA & much more expensive than clinchers.
    My 88mm rims are plenty stiff. If I wasn't riding the Vittorias, they might be too harsh of a ride for me.

    Quote Originally Posted by Seve View Post
    You will need a couple of new sets of brake pads as well, given the carbon braking surface.
    Mine came with brake pads. But I did buy 2 extra sets of pad holders. I just swap the holders/pads in whenever I use the carbon rimmed wheels. Colored holders are also available to make IDing the carbon-specific pads even easier. (I had run out of $$ and got some cheap Ultegra holders.)




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    Senior Member Homeyba's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TrojanHorse View Post
    I think you will find that carbon aero rims will be pretty flexy & overall the experience will be a big PITA & much more expensive than clinchers.

    Don't let that stop you though, I'm just thinking out loud here.
    It's actually the opposite. A 400mm+ carbon rim will be stronger and less flexible. Got to be careful thinking out loud. The only problem I had with tubulars (Zipp 404's) was that I had a tire roll off under hard braking after a long, steep, winding descent. It was a hot day and with the braking and steep hill (over 7 miles long) the glue got hot and melted. When I hit the brakes real hard at the bottom of the hill the tire came off the rim. I run clinchers now, still Zipp's on both the single and tandem. I've thought about getting another set of tubulars. I still may do it. They are nice but I think the high end clinchers are just about on par with the tubulars now days.
    It doesn't get harder, you just go slower.

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    SuperGimp TrojanHorse's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Homeyba View Post
    It's actually the opposite. A 400mm+ carbon rim will be stronger and less flexible. Got to be careful thinking out loud. The only problem I had with tubulars (Zipp 404's) was that I had a tire roll off under hard braking after a long, steep, winding descent. It was a hot day and with the braking and steep hill (over 7 miles long) the glue got hot and melted. When I hit the brakes real hard at the bottom of the hill the tire came off the rim. I run clinchers now, still Zipp's on both the single and tandem. I've thought about getting another set of tubulars. I still may do it. They are nice but I think the high end clinchers are just about on par with the tubulars now days.
    Well, they certainly look really cool.


  8. #8
    Senior Member Homeyba's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TrojanHorse View Post
    Well, they certainly look really cool.
    Professionaly racers sprinting at 40mph and colliding with another rider will taco any wheel. That doesn't really say much...and they do look really cool!
    It doesn't get harder, you just go slower.

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    what about the lower profiles tubulars? was i correct in thinking that at my weight I should go with the more aero profile like 50 or 88mm? I'm kinda trying to be a bit of a weight weenie with this so I don't know that I'm really interested in going with 88mm set of wheels or not. would 25mm wheels really be out of the question or could I treat them as a "racing set" and ride on them occassionally?

  10. #10
    Senior Member mkadam68's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by motobecane69 View Post
    what about the lower profiles tubulars? was i correct in thinking that at my weight I should go with the more aero profile like 50 or 88mm? I'm kinda trying to be a bit of a weight weenie with this so I don't know that I'm really interested in going with 88mm set of wheels or not. would 25mm wheels really be out of the question or could I treat them as a "racing set" and ride on them occassionally?
    Your weight won't effect the aerodynamics... if that's what you're saying :confused:

    I don't have any 1st-hand experience with 25mm carbon rims. So I have no idea at this point. However, the feedback from other riders (non-clydes) is that carbon rims are just as strong as aluminum ones. I see plenty of friends using them as everyday wheels.

    However, if you do, treat it as an experiment. (And give us some feedback so we know.) At first, use them as special "event" wheels/racing set. See how they hold up over time. Make sure whoever builds them knows what they're doing. If they do go out of true repeatedly, then they obviously can't be an everyday wheel. (If you do go with 25mm's, you'll definitely want more spokes.)

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    nope, not talking about myw eight affecting aeordynamics but about the fact that aero rims like a deep v are better suited for clydes because the rim it'self has more material so it's a stronger rim. I wouldn't think about riding on a 300 gram alloy rim but is it doable on carbon because of it being stronger and being a tubular rim the construction being different so it's beefier in the right places?
    nice blog btw, i knew i saw something about a clyde riding tubulars before and when i saw your pics it reminded me. I saw your originalk posts a few months back

  12. #12
    Senior Member mkadam68's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by motobecane69 View Post
    nope, not talking about myw eight affecting aeordynamics but about the fact that aero rims like a deep v are better suited for clydes because the rim it'self has more material so it's a stronger rim.
    Wasn't sure but that's what I thought.

    Quote Originally Posted by motobecane69 View Post
    I wouldn't think about riding on a 300 gram alloy rim but is it doable on carbon because of it being stronger and being a tubular rim the construction being different so it's beefier in the right places?
    Could be. Definitely is with my 88's, don't know about the lower profile ones. And, given the source of the rims, that might be a big assumption

    Quote Originally Posted by motobecane69 View Post
    nice blog btw, i knew i saw something about a clyde riding tubulars before and when i saw your pics it reminded me. I saw your originalk posts a few months back
    Thanks.

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    anyone with experience flatting and just how big of an ass pain it is? I thought i read somewhere that some people fix tubular flats with sealant through the valve stem? i can't imagine myself wanting to snip apart, patch, and resew a tubular. Would an lbs do it for me? might be worth my time and aggravation to do that, though if i flat out on the road, I need to be able to get back up and running!

  14. #14
    Senior Member mkadam68's Avatar
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    I put about a half-bottle of Stan's Sealant into my tubular tires before mounting them. (Instructions here.) Sttan's might call for the full bottle. But my LBS did only about half. If I get a hole on the road, the sealant is supposed to seal up the hole right away, allowing me to keep riding and not even know. I have no idea if I've tested this yet.

    The valve stem of the tire unscrews, leaving an open tube for you to pour it in to a little at a time. My LBS did the first tire for me, showing me how, then I did the 2nd.

    Taking tires off to replace with another isn't complicated, just requires elbow grease. Carry a rubber-coated tire lever and use that to carefully pry the tire off the rim. Obviously, don't damage the rim. And also carry a cell phone.
    Last edited by mkadam68; 07-26-11 at 08:46 AM.

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    I weigh 250 and have a set of Easton EC90's with Corsa Evo's that haven't given me any problems but I don't use them as my everyday wheels anymore since I've moved to PA and ride on a lot of farm roads now. My everyday tubular wheels are an old set of Rolf Vectors and Mavic Cosmics. I keep two sets glued up and ready so that if I flat one I have another wheel set I can drop in and ride the next day without having to worry about rushing through the glue process. (Not getting into the whole glue vs tape debate here. I prefer glue so I keep two sets of wheels ready)For tires I've run vittoria rally's which are nicely made, ride decent and are cheap but no removeable core so using any kind of sealant is a not fun experience. The Corsa evo's havent given me any problems and even though I don't use those wheels regularly anymore I rode them everyday in va beach before moving and had zero issues. I also tried conti sprinters for awhile but seemed to get more flats than with the other tires I've used and conti's are a very tough tire to mount because they don't stretch as easily as the others. The Tufo's I've tried ride like crap because they're vulcanized and feel like your riding on solid wheels, but they hardly ever flat, and sealant works great in them.I'm currently running challenger strada's and like them so far. well made, ride supple, removeable core, latex tube, and decent price. I like them so much I've been toying with the idea of trying either Challenger Parigi Roubaix(27mm) or the 24mm tire they offer. At my weight 120 psi seems to be the breaking point for flats so all of my tires get pumped to that before every ride. As another poster already said you have to have a second set of brake pads because the ones that have touched aluminum will wreak havoc on your carbon rims because of the embedded pieces of aluminum in the pads. If you've never glued tubs on before it's not as hard a process as some would have you believe(again, not trying to open the tape vs glue debate here) you just have to be patient and pay close attention to what you're doing. If you try to rush through it you can make a big mess of things pretty quickly. There's a great thread in another forum that you should read if you're going tubular, it's 120 pages long and has guys who've been riding tubs for 20 years posting answers to questions. If you're interested send me a pm and I'll tell you where it is. It's a different site and I'm not going to openly post a link and redirect traffic from this great site.

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by motobecane69 View Post
    anyone with experience flatting and just how big of an ass pain it is? I thought i read somewhere that some people fix tubular flats with sealant through the valve stem? i can't imagine myself wanting to snip apart, patch, and resew a tubular. Would an lbs do it for me? might be worth my time and aggravation to do that, though if i flat out on the road, I need to be able to get back up and running!
    sorry I didn't answer this earlier, flatting on tubs can be a little bit of a pain because the sealants are really hit/miss on the roadside. I always carry a preglued tubular with me. I mostly use tufos for spares. They ride like crap but they seem imo to be a little more reisistant to flats so they make for good spares plus there's a couple of really light models that fold tight and won't fill up a seatbag. I'll always give sealant a try first and give it 10-15 minutes to work if not I rip the old tire off and put on my preglued spare and ride on. When I get home ill hang the flat tire on a spare rim, hole down, reinflate and give it overnight to see if it will seal. I've had plenty of tires that didn't seal roadside but held pressure after sitting overnight. Word of caution do not pre-apply sealant to a latex tubed tubular. Because latex tends to lose pressure over time a lot faster than butyl there's a good chance that if you have added sealant as a precaution that the sides of the tube will get glued together and when you reinflate POP! Sealant in latex is for repairs only and even then you have to stay on top of it to make sure it stays pressurized enough to keep the sides from sticking. If after leaving the flat tire hanging overnight it still leaks it then goes off to tirealert for a new tube. They do a bangup job, fast and for a good price-$25 with shipping.

    If you're serious about going tubular get a really cheap set of spare rims for hanging tires overnight for sealant and for stretching prior to gluing. I got 2 sets of old used rims on ebay for like 30 bucks.

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